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The biology of rarity: Conservation of bryophytes and lichens

McIntosh, Terry T. [1], Miles, Wynne [2].

Conservation Implications of the Study of Rare and Unusual Bryophytes of Garry Oak Ecosystems of Southwestern British Columbia, Canada.

Garry oak (Oregon white oak; Quercus garryana) ecosystems are fairly widespread in the western United States, but they have a restricted distribution at the northern limit of their range in British Columbia, Canada. They are found in the southwest corner of the province, mainly on southeastern Vancouver Island and on the adjacent Gulf Islands, with two small outlier populations occurring along the Fraser River to the east. Unfortunately, these coastal areas have had a long history of settlement with the result that many of the original oak stands have been destroyed, replaced by urban centres or agricultural lands. Under 5% of the original forests remain. The majority of the remaining oak sites, in particular their understory communities, are heavily disturbed, and invasive exotic species such as broom and grasses are widespread. A number of interesting bryophytes have been reported from Garry oak habitats in British Columbia. Species such as Entosthodon fascicularis, Bartramia stricta, and Syntrichia laevipila have been listed as rare species of concern both provincially and federally. However, many of the Garry oak habitats have not been inventoried in detail for bryophytes. We have recently initiated an investigation in an effort to increase our knowledge of this group in coastal Garry oak stands and to identify potentially rare bryophyte elements. These ongoing investigations will contribute much needed baseline data to support the conservation of the Garry oak ecosystems. Recent discoveries include the mosses Ephemerum cf. serratum (new to British Columbia), Entosthodon cf. californicus, and Physcomitrium sp., and the liverworts Clevea hyalina, Sphaerocarpos texanus, Targionia hypophylla, Riccia cavernosa, Riccia sp., and possibly R. crystallina. We have also found a number of new locations for Entosthodon fascicularis, and fertile specimens of Frullania bolanderi.

1 - Biospherics Environmental Inc., 3-1175 E. 14th Ave., Vancouver, British Columbia, V5T-2P2, Canada
2 - M. Miles and Associates Ltd., 645 Island Road, Victoria, British Columbia, V8S 2T7, Canada

Garry oak
rare bryophyte conservation.

Presentation Type: Symposium
Session: 7-6
Location: Ballroom 3 (Cliff Lodge)
Date: Monday, August 2nd, 2004
Time: 11:15 AM
Abstract ID:197

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